Table of Contents
ISRN Nutrition
Volume 2013, Article ID 714970, 7 pages
Research Article

Irregular Meal Timing Is Associated with Helicobacter pylori Infection and Gastritis

1Dietetics Department, National University Hospital, 5 Lower Kent Ridge Road, Main Building, Level 1, Singapore 119074
2Dietetics and Nutrition Department, Alexandra Hospital, Jurong Health, Level 1, 378 Alexandra Road, Singapore 159964
3Research and Strategic Planning Division, Research and Evaluation Department, Health Promotion Board, 3 Second Hospital Avenue, Singapore 168937
4Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, National University Hospital, 5 Lower Kent Ridge Road Tower Block, Level 10, Singapore 119074
5Global Healthcare Practice, KPMG, 16 Raffles Quay No. 22-00, Hong Leong Building, Singapore 048581
6Biostatistics Unit, Clinical Research Centre, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Block MD 11, Level 1, Singapore 117597

Received 7 November 2012; Accepted 9 December 2012

Academic Editors: M. S. Buchowski, Y.-H. Chen, and E. Devrim

Copyright © 2013 Su-Lin Lim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Helicobacter pylori (HP) is associated with chronic gastritis and gastric cancer, and more than half of the world’s population is chronically infected. The aim of this retrospective study was to investigate whether an irregular meal pattern is associated with increased risk of gastritis and HP infection. The study involved 323 subjects, divided into three groups as follows: subjects with HP infection and gastritis, subjects with gastritis, and a control group. Subjects were interviewed on eating habits and meal timing. Multivariate logistic regression was used to compare groups. Adjusted odds ratios (OR) were derived controlling for gender, age, stress, and probiotic consumption. Subjects who deviated from their regular meals by 2 hours or more had a significantly higher incidence of HP infection with gastritis (adjusted OR = 13.3; 95% CI 5.3–33.3; ) and gastritis (adjusted OR = 6.1; 95% CI 2.5–15.0; ). Subjects who deviated their meals by 2 hours or more, twice or more per week, had an adjusted OR of 6.3 and 3.5 of acquiring HP infection with gastritis (95% CI 2.6–15.2; ) and gastritis (95% CI 1.5–8.5; ), respectively. Frequent deviation in meal timing over a prolonged period appears associated with increased risk of developing HP infection and gastritis.